As you know, two out-of-state law firms have been aggressively pursuing financial institutions across the state, asserting in formulaic demand letters that their websites violate federal and state law, including the Americans with Disabilities Act. Numerous IBA member banks and thrifts have received these demand letters together with proposed settlement agreements over the past few months.
Last week, the IBA responded to these firms’ tactics by sending them a letter charging that their conduct violates provisions of Illinois law and the Illinois Supreme Court's rules of professional conduct for attorneys, and that the threatened legal actions against IBA member banks and thrifts regarding their websites would violate federal and state prohibitions against meritless and otherwise vexatious litigation.
Our letter demands that the firms “withdraw all demand letters propounded on IBA member banks and thrifts and refrain from any further threats, demands or litigation against any IBA member bank or thrift with respect to its website, unless and until: (1) a legal standard regarding website accessibility is promulgated by the U.S. Department of Justice; and (2) the IBA member bank or thrift has an opportunity to comply, but unreasonably fails to comply, with any deadline for compliance established in connection with that standard.”
Stay tuned − we'll keep you posted on any developments.